Preparing for a lab test: getting started

Some doctors collect specimens for laboratory tests in their offices, but others do not. If your doctor provided you with an order for a test, you will need to visit one of our Patient Service Centers to have your specimen collected.

We have more than 2,200 Patient Service Centers nationwide, with highly-trained professional staff who will collect your specimen.

We’re here to help you have the best experience possible. Arriving prepared can help make your visit go smoothly. In cases of tests that require fasting, your preparation can help ensure the accuracy of your results.

Here are five simple steps to set you up for success during your visit to a Patient Service Center:

  1. Monitor your treatment plan

    All lab testing must begin with an order from your doctor. Your doctor may prescribe lab testing as part of your visit. Or you can request a specific lab test from your doctor. A lab order can be printed or digital. If your doctor doesn’t hand you a printed lab order, we recommend contacting them prior to your Quest appointment to confirm that it was sent electronically.

  2. Find a Quest Diagnostics location near you

    Our locator will help you find Patient Service Centers near you to get your testing done. The locator will show you multiple locations, their hours, contact information and maps. Enter your starting address and you will get printable directions.

  3. Schedule your appointment

    Minimize your wait by making an appointment. We do allow walk-ins, but having an appointment is the better way to fit a Quest visit into your day. Scheduling an appointment will also give you the option of getting helpful pre-appointment email reminders and tips from Quest. If you prefer to walk in, it helps to know that our Patient Service Centers are usually busiest in the early morning.

  4. Know before you go

    Bring the following to your appointment:

    - Lab order from your doctor
    If your doctor did not give you a paper order at your appointment, check with him or her if they sent it electronically.
    - Photo identification
    - Current health insurance information

    It’s important to also know if your test requires fasting the day before and/or morning of your appointment. Your healthcare provider should have indicated this on your lab order or during your visit! Learn more about fasting before a lab test here.

    Find out how you can get your results faster, by learning about MyQuest™ before your appointment.

  5. Payment

    If you’re insured:
    Be sure to ask about Easy Pay™ at your appointment. You can authorize to have your credit, debit, or health savings card automatically pay any remaining balance that your insurance doesn’t cover. With Easy Pay, there are no up-front costs! We also offer payment plans and a Patient Assistance Program that may make it possible to still get the tests you need.

    If you’re uninsured:
    Uninsured patients are required to pay for their testing at the time of service. Ask your doctor about our discounted pricing for uninsured patients, or learn more about your options through our Patient Assistance Program.

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